It's highly recommended...

@SaintAnne (5453)
United States
November 20, 2008 1:03pm CST
by people who don't like cooked, good food. So last night, I took the girls out for one of their special occasions. I have heard about this place in a nearby town and have had people recommend it to me so I got reservations. The night before the dinner, I ended up checking these restaurant review sites and the number of people saying they had a great dinner there almost equal the number of people that said they were never going back to this highly-pretentious place. So I was seriously considering canceling the dinner there and go to the one where I've been to before and loved the whole experience overall. But then, it's a new place to try out and I thought we would enjoy our dinner with a great waterfront view. I was SO wrong. The maitre d' kept calling me a different name after I've told him my name twice. We didn't get to sit outside as it was freezing (okay, not their fault). Our appetizers were okay, something was amiss but hey, the bread tasted good with the butter. Then our entrees came, my sea scallops were a bit raw for my taste and again, there was something amiss. My companions' Mediterranean Chicken ended up like slop they serve in a cheap assisted living facility. And it was raw as the middle still was a bit bloody and the server just took it without apologizing and brought it back to the kitchen when we informed them. 10 minutes later, he came back with the same chicken and same veggies, arranged in the same way as my companion left it. She didn't eat it at all. The celebrant had some fancy pork chop but it tasted like they poured barbecue sauce all over the thing. It was just okay but it was the best thing we had that night at that restaurant. The server didn't even ask us if we wanted dessert (we didn't want to anyway), he just plopped the check on our table without even saying anything. And it's not like the place was busy, there were only three tables occupied. I almost whispered a warning to the couple who just walked in as we walked out. I always go to a new restaurant excited. I hope for the best food and such. If we had gotten a tinge of good service, I wouldn't be so disappointed and embarrassed that I took them there. And I am not one to nitpick but man, this place was just not worth every dollar I paid. Most of all, I am so mad at myself for taking the birthday girl at this most awful place. Good thing I got her some yummy cupcakes for dessert. That made everything so much better. My question is, after that very long intro, have you ever brought someone to a restaurant or an event for a special occasion where you hype it up and things go wrong, way wrong?
3 people like this
7 responses
@drannhh (15240)
• United States
20 Nov 08
When taking someone out for a special occasion, hubby and I usually go check the place out ahead of time by having a meal there ourselves, just the two of us. However, even with that precaution things did go amiss at one restaurant that have the top review 5 years in a row and that we had been to quite a few times with no disappointments. We took special friends there for their first time, and the restaurant...R U Ready...ran out of BREAD. Can you imagine a top name restaurant running out of bread?! Of course we didn't let it spoil our evening, but shortly after that the place did go downhill and then closed. Well, I know we didn't go back.
4 people like this
@SaintAnne (5453)
• United States
20 Nov 08
Maybe you guys patronizing the place was what was keeping it afloat? Maybe they changed owners, management or chefs? It's sad to hear of once-great places run out of steam but yes, if they no longer dish (pardon the pun) out good food, and run out of BREAD!!!, then it would be a good reason to close. I didn't try out this place as I haven't had the time lately. I knew I should have gone with my gut to go to that place just across this restaurant we went to. We didn't let it spoil our evening too. We had a fun time just making jokes out of the "lovely" experience. I'm just bummed that for such a momentous event, we got crappy food. And it was mostly my idea!
3 people like this
• United States
20 Nov 08
Hahahaha... ran out of bread! Just goes to show that you can't control circumstances. The only thing you have control over is how you choose to view the experience.
3 people like this
@drannhh (15240)
• United States
20 Nov 08
Right, zigzag, in the greater scheme of things going without bread is not high on the list of misfortunes. You would think though that they would have offered a free dessert or given a slight discount, though, given what that dinner cost!
2 people like this
• United States
21 Nov 08
Wowwwwww!!Isnt that a big big bummmer!! I have had severeal Rests like that..you think there goin to be soo spectatcular..and all and they turn out to be the most worst of places ever..personally i would have asked to speak with the manager..he would have gave u a discount or even free...the chef has to be made aware what a crappy job they did..and what they needed to improve..but..if it was ur case with the bday girls and it was thattt baddd..i would have left in the middle..and went somewhere i knew she would have enjoyed..i wont tolerate bad service..i wont be too rude..but i wil stand up for what i believe in..tell the manager and just leave...
1 person likes this
@SaintAnne (5453)
• United States
21 Nov 08
We should have just left but I was the one who just wanted to wait it out and pay. I was thinking more of my karma than theirs. I hope there's never going to be a next time but if it happens again, I surely would take what you said to action.
@alokn99 (5717)
• India
21 Nov 08
Sorry to hear about your terrible experience. I've had similar experiences at restaurants not once but on a number of ocassions. Invariably they are the one s suggested by someone. It may not be that the food or service is terrible , but on those times when i have looked forward to having an enjoyable time, the mood has turned from excitement to disgust and even to embarrasment for having selected such a place. I make sure to avoid going there again and would most definitley not recommend it to someone else.
@SaintAnne (5453)
• United States
21 Nov 08
You described the mood change quite well, alokn. Yes, it was excitement at first... and then hmmm, what is this? and then... ugh... and then I'm sorry i took you guys here... and now regret. I definitely would not go back there again and would talk about this restaurant to someone who's willing to listen. Thanks!
1 person likes this
@subha12 (18453)
• India
21 Nov 08
it was never so horrible for me.but in many cases there are only hypes and all the things are just going mad. I have seen similar in case of a treat i gave my roommate while leaving at a restaurant of her choice. it was very bad and pricy.
1 person likes this
@SaintAnne (5453)
• United States
21 Nov 08
I don't mind paying for an expensive meal especially for such an occasion for a very loved one... but I hate it when they charge so much when I can get better food if I go to Denny's or Carrow's.
@Opal26 (17690)
• United States
21 Nov 08
Hi anne~ I know that sometimes when you try a new restaurant it doesn't always work out as you expected. But, as you explained this place and the way the food came out I would have done alot more complaining before paying for a meal that couldn't have been eaten! Chicken that isn't fully cooked! No way! And after sending it back and it still isn't eatable! And you didn't care for your meal and the birthday girl's dinner was lousy too! I would have complained alot! And the waiter had an attitude too! Honestly, if the food was that bad I might have just got up and walked out! It sounds like a total disaster. I know that sometimes those things do happen, but at least try to please the customers a little!
@SaintAnne (5453)
• United States
21 Nov 08
As I'm reading more responses, I am feeling that I should have complained a bit more. My companions were daring me to just stand up and leave without waiting for the check (as it took a while to get there too). But you know me, I'm miss goody-two-shoes. Or doormat, whatever.
• United States
20 Nov 08
That sounds awful. If it were me, I would complain to management. If that didn't work, I would be certain to share my negative experience with anyone and everyone. Wait staff has a responsibility to be friendly and courteous. The smart ones learn to be really good at that, since that makes the difference in tips.
@SaintAnne (5453)
• United States
21 Nov 08
I just sensed that no one really cared at that restaurant. And yes, I will surely be talking to whoever it was that recommended this place to me. Thanks, wilsongoddard.
• United States
20 Nov 08
I have learned that when it is important to me that things go well I should stick with the tried and true. Experimenting is a different thing and should be done on your own time or with fellow experimenters! Hehehe. I hope you had a good time with your friends anyway, and enjoyed doing something you hadn't done in a while! That counts for something!
1 person likes this
@SaintAnne (5453)
• United States
21 Nov 08
I have learned my lesson! After the whole dinner, I started off a list in my head of where I should have taken them because there were at least five that I know we surely have had a much greater time with better-tasting food. We did have a good time. No one was blaming me, we had a blast just reliving the night again and how funny it was. But birthday girl really appreciated the whole night. So that counts for something. Thanks, Ziggy.